I was first introduced to Buteyko breathing around 1 year ago by a couple of health nut naturalists who would go to every health seminar going around.
They explained the idea behind Buteyko breathing and how by breathing properly you can help your body fight many health conditions including
- Asthma , Respiratory Conditions
- Panic and Anxiety Attacks
- Relieve Stress
- Allergies , Hayfever
The aim of the buteyko breathing method is to reduce our reliance on modern medicines and technology and teach our bodies to use oxygen and the simple act of breathing to overcome a range of conditions.
Buteyko breathing can go quite extreme and they even recommend taping your mouth closed at night to avoid mouth breathing but make sure it's a non toxic tape or sleeping eye patch type device would be a good alternative.
Buteyko Breathing Steps
The first thing to remember when practicing Buteyko style breathing is to breath in a very controlled and shallow manner don't suck in that air like your last breath, it should be a gentle rythm of breathing in and out.
Keep your mouth closed at all times and only use your nose to breath. It may be hard if you have a blocked nose but it should eventually clear once you start the breathing technique.
Buteyko breathing requires that you breath into your diaphragm (stomach) and not your chest. In fact some may notice buteyko is similar to some meditation style breathing techniques. When breathing check to make sure your diaphragm inflates and deflates in a controlled manner and your chest remains still.
When breathing ensure you breath in a very shallow manner so if you help a blade of grass under your nose it would barely move. This shallow controlled breathing also applies for the breathing in part.
Sit in an upright position and shallow breath for around 2 - 3 minutes, also remember to breath in fully and do not do partial inhales.
After the 2-3 minute peroid when you get to the exhaling part of your breathing , pinch your nose closed and pause your breathing until you feel the urge to breath. For beginners this may be as quick as a few seconds but your aim as your progress is to be able to hold your breath for around a minute.
After holding your breath for a comfortable amount of time , unpinch your nose and resist the urge to draw in a big breath of air instead continue with the shallow breathing technique. It is hard at first and if you find it difficult you may have held your breath for too long.
note: The pinching of those nose after exhaling breath is a key to buteyko breathing as it builds up carbon dioxide in your body which races around trying to find a way out and will help to clear up air passages and improve blood flow. By practicing shallow breathing we trap more of this C02 and this allows for much easier breathing.
It is recommended to practice these steps until you reach around 5-10 minutes of breathing time.
Buteyko Breathing :)
There you have it for buteyko breathing so whenever you feel affected by hayfever , having trouble with your asthma or anxiety attacks you can give it a go and get some relief by controlling your breathing.
And for anyone who has hayfever related breathing problems there is a simple technique to get some relief. When having a shower put the temperature on a comfortable warm heat and after a few minutes turn of the hot water completely and turn on cold full blast. It will clear you up very quickly :)
Jack on April 04, 2013:
Simply put, thank, just what I needed, it's not for me, a friend, long distance hill walker suffering chest pains, I came across Buteyko by chance in a charity shop, bought the book for him, but he's in denial, think I'm making out I know more than him, what surprises me is just how many sporty types don't know about this, I was taught as a boy boxer to keep my mouth shut, but I assumed I was to protect my jaw.
Krzysztof on March 01, 2013:
Thank you for a great article! I suffer from a few allergies, but I have a dream to serve in some uniformed services when I graduate the university. I believe this method will help overcome my condition and reach my goal.. but I have a question which may seem silly.. what is the byteyko's view on yawning? If I'm supposed to breath only through my nose, is it allowed to yawn at all?
Alan H on February 18, 2012:
I am 59 years of age and read about this breathing method a few weeks ago. Prior to adopting the technique i have been using a preventer inhaler twice a day for the past 50 year, in addition to a ventolin inhaler 6 times a day. The results have been unbelievable, i have never felt so well and healthy in my whole life and for the past week have not used my preventor inhaler and i feel wonderful and full of energy and breath.........thank you thank you thank you.....
stessily on February 14, 2012:
expectus, Well presented and informative. On my own, I have found breathing in and out through the nose to be beneficial for instilling calm in anxious moments. This is an interesting method, and I thank you for sharing it here.
Samuel dhas on August 19, 2011:
is this helpful for shortness of breath ? for how many days do i need to do this technique ?
Pollyannalana from US on July 19, 2011:
I will try it too, I am so use to 'in with the good and out with the bad' I will have to practice, but I have a couple of these things I wouldn't mind help with. Voted up, thanks!
justin on November 17, 2010:
Rocky on November 05, 2010:
I am practicing Buteyko method and do not require relievers generally. But while sleeping, I use to wake up at 3-4 AM hyperventilating. That is the time I need one puff. Otherwise I am fine and am able to jog 3 KM without any problems. Any advice for the night hyperventilation.
lathief on November 03, 2010:
thank u for your information
h4honline on October 31, 2010:
I can say from personal experience that the Buteyko method works wonders. Thanks for bringing it to a wider audience.
expectus (author) from Land Downunder on December 19, 2009:
thanks for comment Don, it is a great technique sometimes if i have trouble sleeping because of breathing and allergy problems I do a bit of buteyko to clear it up and go back to sleep.
dusanotes from Windermere, FL on December 15, 2009:
Wonderful Hub, Expectus. I'm printing it up for my wife who suffers from all kinds of allergic reactions. I, too, believe that breathing can cure a lot of ills. I have a back problem. My left side gets very painful unless I relieve pressure there by manipulating my back. Sometimes the pain is such that I can't take the next step. I straighten up, breath deeply and in a moment the pain is gone. It's a real miracle, so that's why I give your Hub so much credence. It's a great Hub. Don White